Aimee’s Pretty Palate: Dip into the New Year

Photo by Aimee Broussard

It’s a new year, and at the time of writing this the LSU Tigers are heading into the playoffs, with the odds of potentially being in the national championship game quite great! If you’re not able to make it down to New Orleans for the big game, you’re going to want to cheer them on in style with one of these tasty dip recipes. And let’s just say that if someone else is playing in that game, you—or someone in your household—are likely to still have the game on the television.

That’s where my snacks come in.

My Spicy Corn Dip is so easy it really shouldn’t be called a recipe at all. You just mix and dump ingredients. But don’t let its ease dissuade you—it’s one of those dishes that will disappear quickly and is always a crowd favorite. Let it sit overnight for the best results and for the spice to do its thing.

Hands down, one of my most popular recipes on my blog is the Crawfish Queso Dip. It’s rich, it’s indulgent, and I dare say it’s a good luck charm. In fact, my high school best friend’s daughter competed in her schools’ 4-H cookery contest with my very recipe and won first place in two different rounds, making it all the way to regionals. Make it and you’ll see why!

And finally, the Olive Hummus Spread is a bit healthier, and while technically it’s more of a spread than a dip, it breaks up all the richness on your sports watching table quite nicely. It’s another option that will amaze you at how quickly it disappears.

Welcome 2020, y’all. I’ve got delicious plans for you!


SPICY CORN DIP
Ingredients:
2 cans Mexi-corn, drained
1 (7-oz.) can green chiles, with juice (to taste—I only add about ½)
3 jalapeños, seeded and finely chopped
3 green onions, chopped
3cups grated cheddar cheese
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
Pinch sugar
Mix together all ingredients, and stir until completely blended. Add salt and pepper if desired. Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to serve. Serve with Frito Scoops. Dip can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Makes 6-8 servings.

OLIVE HUMMUS SPREAD
Ingredients:
1 (15-oz.) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 Tbsp. tahini (sesame paste)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
½ cup pitted olives
2 small garlic cloves, peeled and cut in half
Pinch salt
Fresh ground pepper to taste
Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth, scraping bowl down occasionally. Hummus can be thinned with water if necessary. Serve drizzled with a bit of olive oil and a sprinkling of chopped olives, if desired. Serve with pita, crackers or corn chips, or use as a sandwich spread.
Makes 4-6 servings.

CRAWFISH QUESO DIP
Ingredients:
2 Tbsp. butter
½ cup yellow onion, chopped
¼ cup red bell pepper, chopped
1 tsp. garlic, minced
¼ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1 tsp. Creole seasoning
1 lb. crawfish tails, thawed
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (plus more for topping)
1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 green onions, chopped (plus more for topping)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 2-quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
In a medium-size pan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add onions, bell pepper and garlic, and cook until vegetables are translucent and wilted. Add salt, pepper and Creole seasoning. Add crawfish; cook for 2 minutes longer.
In a large bowl, combine Monterey Jack, cream cheese and green onions; mix well. Add crawfish mixture to cheese mixture, combine well. Pour entire contents into prepared baking dish. Sprinkle top of baking dish with a bit more Monterey Jack cheese. Bake until mixture is bubbly and beginning to brown on top, about 25 minutes. Switch oven to medium-heat broil, watch closely, and remove as top of dip becomes golden brown. Top with chopped green onions and serve immediately.
Makes  6-8 servings.

Aimee Broussard is a Southern food blogger and award-winning author. Her recent cookbook Picnics, Potlucks & Porch Partiesdebuted exclusively on QVC. Join Aimee for weekly recipes with a side of Southern hospitality on her blog, aimeebroussard.com.

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